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The Reflection

The Reflection

By Aiza Bragg

In Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, the characters of Victor and his creature parallel each other as they both face injustice and suffering and both resort to violent revenge. The creature is a manifestation of Victor’s own flaws and motivations, as Victor calls him “my own spirit let loose from the grave […] forced to destroy all that was dear to me” (100), and he expresses Victor’s need for revenge, companionship, and power.

I’m Talking to You: Mohsin Hamid’s The Reluctant Fundamentalist

I’m Talking to You: Mohsin Hamid’s The Reluctant Fundamentalist

By Manya Kapur

Since the fall of the Soviet Union in 1991, the United States of America has emerged as an unmatched superpower in the international arena. With its supremacy in the global economy and monopoly over mass media, the West stands at the forefront in shaping not only world culture and our accepted history, but the attitudes and ideals of the anglophone world.

I am Not Your Stepping Stone: An Analysis of Ethnocentric Bias in Hamid’s The Reluctant Fundamentalist

I am Not Your Stepping Stone: An Analysis of Ethnocentric Bias in Hamid’s The Reluctant Fundamentalist

By Emily Que

In a world shocked by the horror of death and calamity that came from 9/11, Mohsin Hamid allows us to listen to the voice of a Pakistani-American during this tumultuous time. While many novels about the terrorist attacks of September 11 occupy themselves in exploring the aftermath and traumatic effects on the white population, The Reluctant Fundamentalist’s story circulates around the critical stance of a Pakistani-American who momentarily fell victim to the powerful and imperialistic American system.

A Faux Confession

A Faux Confession

By Ila Iverson

Mohsin Hamid’s casual yet powerful writing style communicates the biographical story of a Pakistani Muslim’s enchantment and disenchantment with America while maintaining a degree of uncertainty regarding the character and intention of the narrator and protagonist, Changez. The Reluctant Fundamentalistintrigues and involves the reader with unique stylistic decisions. Presented as a one-sided conversation, or as a monologue, the text brims with realism and ambiguity.

“Thus Conscience Does Make Cowards of Us All:” Hamlet’s Freudian Sense of Guilt

“Thus Conscience Does Make Cowards of Us All:” Hamlet’s Freudian Sense of Guilt

By Macy Quigg

In Civilization and its Discontents, Sigmund Freud imagines the origin of guilt in humans and how it evolves into a more complex conscience. He posits that guilt stems from a fear of the loss of the father’s love when a child recognizes that they have done something bad and may be found out.

A Return to the Sea

A Return to the Sea

By Shan-Li Barkovich

Edna Pontellier’s story culminates in death, but not in destruction. The last pages of Kate Chopin’s novel The Awakening detail Edna’s final moment on the shore of Grand Isle in a position that may indicate her defeat as one who has attempted to break free from the conformities of what it means to be a woman in 19th-century America, but may also represent her success in accepting the impossibility of her situation and taking control of the one thing she has power over: her mortality.

American Madmen: Oppenheimer, Teller, and the Purpose of Science

American Madmen: Oppenheimer, Teller, and the Purpose of Science

By Camryn Traa

When considering where to lay blame for the hypothetical end of the world, it can be hard to decide whether responsibility lies with the creators of the means of destruction or those who actively put these means to use. This struggle is present throughout Heinar Kipphardt’s play, In the Matter of J. Robert Oppenheimer.

Stephen Straker Prize Winners 2019/20

We are thrilled to announce the Straker Prize winners for 2019/20! This year, the winners are Macy Quigg and Natalie Sparrow.

Eichmann, Oppenheimer, and the Perils of Blind Obedience

Eichmann, Oppenheimer, and the Perils of Blind Obedience

By Erfan Hakim

In Plato’s Republic, Thrasymachus makes the disconcerting claim that “justice is nothing other than the advantage of the stronger” (Plato 338c).What is fascinating about Arendt’s Eichmann in Jerusalem: A Report on the Banality of Evil is that Adolf Eichmann falls prey to Thrasymachus’ problematic conception of justice.

Nietzsche and Arendt’s Warnings Against Totalitarianism

Nietzsche and Arendt’s Warnings Against Totalitarianism

By Gabriel Cameron

Friedrich Nietzsche and Hannah Arendt have both been misinterpreted with regard to their attitude toward the Nazis, but in fact they both hold very strong and uncompromising anti-Nazi views. I believe Nazism is a version of the ascetic ideal, an ideal which Nietzsche abhors.